Video marketing is growing exponentially and it’s definitely here to stay. Fortunately, it’s easy to dominate. Jack Purdie is the founder of Nutral, a startup that focuses on producing dietary supplements for demanding dietary requirements. Jack chatted to us about how to use video to build a startup brand.
Over the past year of trading, building the brand and getting our products in front of our ideal customers has been one of the biggest challenges. But the fact is, with all of the tools, marketing channels and media outlets available at our fingertips, this should be one of the easiest.
I personally spent a lot of time trying to increase my organic search ranking on Google. I reached out for guest posts and built links until my fingers bled, but then I had a sort of realisation: If the biggest search engine in the world is Google, then what is the second? Oh, of course, it’s YouTube.
It was at this point that I realised that maybe this video thing was worth a shot, and this is where my video promotion journey really started.
Let’s be movie stars.
I began playing with stock footage that I’d purchased online and uploaded onto Final Cut. The end result actually looked pretty cool, but the fact is it didn’t really have a purpose. The video left the viewer none-the-wiser as to what Nutral actually was, or what we did. It was just some cool graphics and catchy music.
Deep down, I think I knew this. I knew that if I was going to connect with my audience, ignite fires of desire in the hearts and instill a deep sense of want, then I would have to do better. A LOT better.
So I did what every new entrepreneur is told and encouraged to do. I outsourced the task.
This was my First Big Mistake.
Let me explain to you what happened.
I paid a content writer to write me an amazing script and screenplay that I could use to promote my company. It was based on the Dollar Shave Club video (which I’m sure you have seen) and I knew I had to have it.
The work took a couple of weeks to complete and what I got in return was a very complicated and elaborate script, including stage directions and costume suggestions.
“What the hell,” I thought. “I thought this was meant to make the task easier”.
But instead, what had happened was I had vastly over-complicated the whole project and blown about £200 on a script that I wasn’t in a position to use. How could this have been avoided? Well, that leads me nicely to my first key tip:
KEY TIP #1 - Define a purpose from the start - what are you trying to achieve with a video?
So from the start, you need to really ask yourself, what are you trying to achieve with your new video marketing initiative?
Are you looking to increase brand exposure? Maybe you’re looking to encourage your following to engage? Maybe (most likely) you just want people to buy your stuff and WHY IS THIS VIDEO STUFF SO COMPLICATED?
Before looking into the more intricate elements of your video, take a moment to sit down with a pen and paper and do some goal-setting for how you want video to integrate with your marketing strategy. Think about some of these key points:
- Where is the video going to be published? Social media? YouTube? Direct links to customers?
- Is the purpose of the video to offer value? (information/’10 ways to’/’what are the best’ types of video)
- Where have your viewers been before viewing your video? Have they come from your Facebook page, or are they on your Instagram page? Do they already have a vague understanding of what your company does?
- Do you need a specific Call to action (CTA) in the video? Are you looking to drive viewers to a specific landing page?
- Who is the video going to be starring? Do you need to hire a presenter?
These are some of the fundamental points that you need to address before even looking at writing a script.
But when it comes down to WHAT you are going to say in your video, here is the blueprint that I have developed and follow. This is based on a simple introductory/explainer video. Variations on this basic template can be endless, depending on your intended outcome and type of message you are trying to deliver. This is based on the ‘Problem, Problem, Product, Solution’ (PPPS) method.
- Don’t worry about introducing yourself by name. This wastes precious time and unless you have built your personal brand, no one really cares unfortunately. Use a lower-third title to introduce your name and title if you feel you need to.
- Start by stating a real problem or fact that your (potential) customers will be experiencing. Back this up with evidence or statistics immediately.
- Introduce another statistic or fact that your customers will be able to relate to. This solidifies the fact that you are on their level, plus they will be more open to what you have to say once they know you empathise with them.
- Strongly introduce your product name and brand. Cut to some sexy imagery or macro shots of your product or service at this stage to show your product off - this step should not last long at all.
- Refer back to the previous two facts/problems that you outlined prior to introducing your product and explain how your product addresses and solves both of these problems. Remember, you can choose what facts/problems you talk about, so make sure they are hyper-relevant to your product.
- Go on to give some more added value as to what your product delivers, which will ensure that you completely blow the facts/problems out of the water.
- Finish the video by giving the viewer a clear path of action to take. You may have noticed how YouTube videos normally end with “Remember to like and subscribe”, or Instagram with “Swipe up to find more”. This is because when the video is finished, people subconsciously change their thinking process from a passive intake of information to suddenly having to think about what they’re going to do next. Make it easier for them and tell them what to do.
Here's an example of our latest video pulling these techniques together
KEY TIP #2 - Stick to a solid plan and avoid waffling on. Know what you want to communicate and what you want the customer to do at the end of your video.
Let’s talk about production value.
One of the biggest turning points in using video to increase my brand exposure was getting the look and ‘feel’ of the video right.
There are two different types of video that I have found are equally as important as each other when increasing brand exposure:
Type 1: Selfie, direct-to-camera style videos (Instagram Stories)
Type 2: Properly produced, lit, edited and recorded promotional videos (YouTube)
Don’t let anyone tell you that one is better than the other. Each one is equally as important as the other. Allow me to explain.
Type 1, selfie-style videos are an incredibly powerful tool in your video marketing strategy. They allow you to directly address the viewer in an informal, personal manner that they are already familiar and receptive to. This also allows the viewer to feel more connected with, and more inclined to listen to, what you have to say.
In addition to this, these videos are SUPER easy to roll out. Honestly, just hold your phone in front of your face, look directly into the camera (cover your screen with paper if tempted to check yourself out), and talk about whatever you want.
The benefit of this type of video is that you are able to very quickly and effectively get your message across in a way that doesn’t take much time to produce and your audience will be able to instinctively connect with it.
You can implement these Type 1 videos in a number of ways. Firstly, I often see people record a series of these videos in cool locations or with industry influencers and upload them on a regular basis (they don’t have to be live!).
The second way to implement this is with Vlog-style content: documenting an event, a process or maybe something that you are learning. This is another great way to share value and works best without a sales-y undertone.
The second style of video that I recommend you throw into the equation is Type 2, or the fully-produced option.
Personally, I love these. There’s nothing more satisfying than seeing yourself on the screen, looking and sounding good and generally owning the space.
These types of videos work best for your brand as introductory videos, explainer videos or product promotional videos. Applications that have a strong purpose and would benefit from showing off the fact that your brand means business and isn’t afraid to skimp on production.
I have a few tips that I will share to get the most out of a ‘fully-produced’ video:
Firstly: Production quality! Invest in or borrow a proper tie-clip/lapel or shotgun microphone. If you are using a videographer then they should have this anyway. This is a must!
For all of my video projects like this I use a dedicated videographer (@elitecinematics Instagram) that I know has all of the equipment, experience and knowledge to make a video that blows the competition out the water each time.
In addition to this, it’s great to work with someone that knows how you work, how you present, what you expect and still has the patience to wait out your giggle fits.
Secondly: Location. You want to be in surroundings that are in keeping with your company ethos/product or design. Are you selling an all-natural fairtrade doormat? You should probably stage your video outside! Maybe you’re promoting your Mexican pop-up food stall - you should look into locations in your city’s cultural quarter… You get where I’m going with this.
Thirdly (and probably most importantly): Presenting skills.
I am naturally a complete and utter introvert. It’s true, I am.
Before I started this whole video marketing thing, I would rather lick a wasps’ nest than talk about myself on camera.
Not much has changed, except I learned to get over it. You need to go in with the mentality that people WANT to hear what you’re saying, are interested in your company and can actually benefit by listening to you.
You’re delivering value. No one is as passionate about your business as you are and therefore you are the only person truly qualified to speak about it.
When you’re presenting, make sure you keep your hands visible. This is an old trick that subconsciously shows the viewer that you aren’t hiding anything.
Speak slowly and clearly, remember the PPPS technique that we discussed above and give special emphasis to key words and phrases.
Forget the camera as much as possible and channel the inner passion that you have for your business. Why are you doing what you’re doing? How are you going to make the viewers’ life a million times better?
Get your videos out in the wild.
Now that you have some lovely videos that you are incredibly happy with, it’s time to get them in front of some eyeballs!
The first and most obvious channel to get it up on is YouTube. As mentioned before, YouTube is the second biggest search engine in the world and has the ability to drive some serious traffic to your website/landing page, etc.
The second is Facebook. Now, everyone knows that it’s easy to link out of Facebook to your video hosted on YouTube, but it’s a little-known fact that Facebook will actually favour videos that are hosted on Facebook.
This means that if you upload your video to Facebook and link to the Facebook-hosted version, you are granted with all sorts of goodies, including increased reach, lower PPC and increased engagement rate. So it pays to keep it within the Facebook eco-system!
KEY TIP #3 - Create a Facebook advert with your video in it, link it to your Facebook page, then have a CTA on your Facebook page that links to your website/shop/landing page. This will keep your CPA/CPC down and increase your reach!
Some final words.
Some key take-homes here are to, firstly, be crystal-clear on what your intended outcome is. Secondly, convey your points with utter passion, honesty and drive. Finally, get your video in front of the people that want to see it.
If this article has helped you out, then I would love to hear from you! Drop me a message at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions, suggestions or success stories that you have regarding integrating video into your brand marketing strategy!
Keep the hustle alive.
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